At least one of them is suspected to have died of malnutrition, especially a lack of adequate protein in the body; clueless local health officials swing into action to investigate
Fazal Khan, aged one, had fever and died while undergoing treatment at Rajawadi Hospital
Three children of a family living in a Govandi slum died in a span of 48 hours. As per medical records, one of the kids died due to severe protein malnutrition while the reason behind the deaths of the other two is unknown. When mid-day contacted BMC health officials about this, they said they were not aware of the incident. Officials, however, added that they will investigate the matter and see if the deaths were due to protein malnutrition or any other medical issues.
All three deceased were residents of Rafi Nagar slum in Govandi, which is in the M East ward—infamous for tuberculosis cases. With the deaths and the possibility of malnutrition, locals are now worried and asking if the children in the area need any special intervention. Abdul Rahim Khan lost his two sons—Hasnain, aged 5, and Noorain, aged 3.5 years. Rahim’s brother-in-law Mohammad Eid Khan lost his one-year-old son Fazal Ali.
The home of the three deceased, in Rafi Nagar slum, Govandi
Abdul said, “My kids initially got conjunctivitis, but later they also had fever. We got medicines from the local doctor but it did not work. Later, they even got blisters on their hands, mouth and feet and their condition kept deteriorating. I was taking Noorain to Rajawadi Hospital on October 26 but he died on the way.”
“The next day, Hasnain was in pain so we took him to the hospital and admitted him there. He died around 2.30 am on the same day,” he said. The other deceased, Fazal, had a fever. His father said, “Fazal was also admitted to Rajawadi Hospital, but he died there on October 27.”
The hospital conducted a post-mortem of Hasnain but has reserved the cause of death. In Fazal’s death report, the hospital has stated that he died due to kwashiorkor or severe malnutrition caused due to lack of protein in one’s diet. The report also mentioned that the one-year-old had pulmonary edema (excessive fluid in the lungs) and refractory septic shock (presence of hypotension with end-organ dysfunction).
The deceased were residents of Rafi Nagar slum in Govandi, which is in the M East ward. Representation pic
In the case of Noorain, who died on the way, the family obtained a death certificate from a general physician and conducted the last rites. mid-day reached out to Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation Executive Health Officer Dr Mangala Gomare about the incident. She said, “We are not aware of this particular incident where three children of a family died. It is a matter of concern. We will investigate the matter and take the necessary steps.”
Mohammad Eid Khan lost his one-year-old son
A senior health official on the condition of anonymity said, “We do not know if these kids were being taken to the Anganwadi or if their health was checked under the Integrated Child Development Services. The ward health officer has to know the history of the family and whether the children were immunised regularly and also of the mothers were screened regularly during pregnancy. This will help us reach a conclusion.”
Day in October when the first kid died